Americans are locked in a heated debate: Should we close public schools due to this new wave of deadly scorpions? And while some might beg to differ, the experts all agree: there is no safer place for your kids to be than trapped inside a scorpion pit.
I get it. That sounds insane. But you have to look at the numbers. Only a few varieties of scorpions can actually kill you. Most scorpion stings will only maim the victim, with symptoms ranging from brief bouts of unbearable pain, mild convulsing, and some slight difficulty breathing. Are we supposed to disrupt our children’s education just because a handful of teachers don’t feel comfortable teaching in a dank pit with a bed of scorpions crawling all over everyone?
Yes, there is a nonzero risk of permanent injury or death. Yes, the scorpions are breeding at an alarming rate. And yes, science suggests their venom carries long-term effects. But you’re just cherry-picking data to support your irrational fear of teaching inside a deep pit surrounded by hundreds of scorpions.
So while it may be true the number of scorpions inside each pit may be up, how many kids are actually being stung? Oh, your kid was? Sorry, but your anecdotal evidence isn’t enough to convince me that we can’t hold classes inside the scorpion pit safely and responsibly. Every behavior carries SOME risk, whether it’s driving a car or insulating your attic with asbestos. Because what’s the alternative? No more cars? A house without asbestos? Remote learning, away from the scorpion pit? That’s not sustainable. What are parents who have to hurl themselves down in the scorpion pit for minimum wage and no health insurance going to do for childcare? You selfish teachers have to understand that parents are counting on overworked and underpaid teachers to not only educate their children but babysit them too.
This isn’t some partisan issue, like seat belts or marginalized people having the right to vote. Both Democrats and Republicans overwhelmingly support sending your kids back to school and into the scorpion pit. You know something is a good idea when both parties support it. In-person learning with scorpions has joined the illustrious ranks of sound bipartisan policies such as “massive tax cuts for the rich” and “the Iraq war.”
But it’s not just the parents who are suffering. If we go back to remote learning, it’s the kids who will really feel it. Every day they’re not in school, they’re not learning crucial answers that will be on the tests that determine their school district’s funding. They’re not learning a laughably distorted, exclusively white perspective on American history, leaving them unprepared to become future cable news pundits and op-ed writers. And most importantly, they’re not socializing with other children, so it’s likely they won’t even know the name of the school shooter that kills them. These are all vital parts of growing up in America, and I’d hate for this generation to miss out on these foundational horrors.
It’s not like we don’t have safety protocols in place. This isn’t 2020—we’ve learned a ton about how scorpions work and how to best prevent them from significantly harming the ruling class’s stock portfolios. First, anyone stung by a scorpion will be sent home from the pit at the end of the school day. They’ll be forbidden from interacting with scorpions for at least five days, unless the school administrators need them to descend back into the pit for team sports. Our contact-tracing program will inform the rest of the scorpion pit that they’ve been in contact with someone who’s been stung, but they will still have to continue to come in to the scorpion pit unless we can visibly see symptoms, such as frequent vomiting and explosive diarrhea. If they have any questions or concerns, we have one school nurse who comes in for a half-hour every other Wednesday.
I know that none of this is ideal, but at the end of the day, we’re just going to have to learn to live with the scorpion pits. Well, you all will have to learn to live with them. I’m permanently working from home, stockpiling scorpion antidote. What, you’re not hoarding antidote?! That’s insane. Why aren’t you taking this seriously?!